Art driving design


Diane Wright mixes traditional antiques with modern art and design

Coats-Wright Art & Design specializes in a wide range of artistic pieces including antiques, wall art, sculptures and furniture. (Submitted Photos)


Diane Wright, owner of Coats-Wright Art & Design, has been in the art business for more than 30  years. Her gallery, which opened inMay in the Indiana Design Center, is home to a wide array of art, antiques, furniture and more. Wright has a passion for art and design, both old and new, and finds them most interesting when placed in contrast to one another.

“I think it’s great to see antiques, old rugs and traditional paintings mixed with modern art and interiors,” said Wright. “People shouldn’t be afraid to mix the modern and the traditional.”


This central idea has given her gallery its unique flavor. Everything from paintings by local artist C.W. Mundy to pieces on consignment from the New York gallery of Jane Eckert, a good friend of Wright’s for 32 years, is on display. In addition to traditional fine art, Wright has joined with Westfield’s R. Beauchamp Antiques and Sarver’s Oriental Rugs to offer a wide array of European furniture and fine vintage rugs.

“I love antiques because they are flawed. As humans, we are all flawed, and I think that’s why (antiques) have that appeal to me,” said Wright.

Since opening the gallery, Wright has noticed one misconception amongst the surrounding community.

“I want to shout from the rooftops the public can come in here,” said Wright. “A lot of people seem to think it is for members of the trade only, and that’s not the case.”

The public is welcome within the building, and the Center is putting new signage in placeto correct this misconception.

While Wright deals with an array of customers from day to day, she tends to see one common problem.

“Most individuals don’t leave a budget or a plan for art in their redesign projects,” said Wright. “Letting art drive the project allows you to create an environment for a wonderful piece.”

In Wright’s opinion, a room or space designed around art leads to a cohesive vision, while a good design can be bogged down by art only added as an afterthought.

Wright doesn’t believe the gallery experience should be intimidating or exclusive.

“I don’t want people to be afraid to ask me questions,” said Wright. “The first step in collecting isn’t buying; it’s education.”

Coats-Wright Art & Design is located in the heart of the Indiana Design Center (200 S. Range Line Rd., Carmel). It is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • WHAT: Coats-Wright Art & Design
  • WHERE: Indiana Design Center, 200 S.Range Line Rd., Carmel
  • INFO: Visit

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